View Full Version : Bullying stories needed

05-11-2006, 11:30 AM
I'm co-writing a book about bullying, and am looking for "success story" anecdotes, particularly from parents-- if your child was bullied but the problem is now solved, I'd love to hear how it happened. (Did your child confront the bully? Did a teacher/principal discipline the bully? Did your child learn how to stop being a target? Etc.)

Please PM or e-mail me at jg @ jennaglatzer.com (remove spaces), and let me know if you want me to use your name or a pseudonym. Thanks very much!

Alien Enigma
05-11-2006, 11:46 AM
I was bullied in junior high. No one knew that I was taken Kenpo, and I kept it quiet. I was walking home one day from school and a guy started pushing me. I let him push me a few times then I slapped his hand away. David (the bully) got mad and said, "Wise guy eh?"

He picked me up threw me to the ground and I kept warning him to let me up. David didn't do it, so I used enough force to stop him and I asked him if he still wanted to fight. I offered him my hand, and I pulled him up.

I was told to be a man and confront the problem in a nonphysical way. I didn't confront the bully with force until I had to. I showed compassion and tried to become his friend. We started talking, but we never were close. I just showed a genuine interest in him as a person, and he stopped bullying people that day.

I'm not a parent but you can use that if you want.


Project nachonaco
05-17-2006, 06:11 AM
Jenna - I'm often teased because of a medical condition I have, PM me for more info if you'd like.

05-19-2006, 06:06 PM
I had a bully grabbing me, where his hands should NOT have been. I was a small girl, and he was huge to me, and very muscular, and he scared me. But I did the right thing, and I reported him to the office, and he was suspended.

A few weeks later he put his hand on my leg on the bus. I instinctly, brushed it away, and he stood up to me, as if ready to fight. Talk about scared - I was petrified. Thankfully about four other boys got in his face and made him leave me alone.

The last day of school that year the teacher and the majority of the class was out of the class room for something. I was still in the class, with two other students and of course this sexual bully. And he grabbed me again! I had just about had it. In my fear, I reacted. I ran towards him, shoved him into the teacher's desk, which brought him down to his knees, and I started pounding him in his kidneys. He was begging me to stop. I did stop, and the two other students were looking at me amazed. I was a very quiet person. I shocked them, and myself. I didn't mess with anyone, and I still don't to this day, but I learned that day, not to take abuse either.

That bully never messed with me ever again, and I got over my fear of him.

What scares me today, though is what to tell my kids how to handle themselves. Of course, I've preached NEVER START a fight. But at the same time, I've told them, if anyone pounds on them, not to stand there and take it. Fear entrance - if they fight back today, someone could hold a grudge and bring a gun to school tomorrow. When I was in school there were no fear of guns.

I'm not a violent person, and I don't like violence, but again, I don't believe in taking abuse. It isn't healthy to remain a victim of abuse, and it isn't healthy for an abuser to continue with abusing. If you've tried everything, and it doesn't work, sometimes it seems the only language a bully understands and respects, is his own. And that is a darn shame.

I have learned and have taught my kids to whenever it's possible to love away a problem causer. It's the old, "kill them with kindness" method. Which does work in some situations. But at times in a physical confrontation, there may not be enough time for that to protect yourself.

Good luck with your book, Jenna! You have a great challenge before you! But you are addressing a real concern. As a parent, I'm grateful.

05-19-2006, 11:01 PM
Humor worked for me one time. In junior high, we were outside waiting for the buses to come pick us up and take us home after school. A truck loaded with stalks of corn drove past, hit a pothole, and dropped several ears of dried corn. A kid (who had picked on me before) grabbed some corn and started pelting me with the hard little dried kernels.

I ignored him at first, but he just kept zinging me. Finally I turned around just in time to get hit in the chest with one. It bounced off my heavy winter coat, of course. So I stuck out my chest like I was Superman or something, looked him in the eye, and said, "Bounced off, didn't it." Like I was bulletproof or something.

He laughed and ran away to tell his buddies what a dork I was, but I noticed that he never got around to throwing any more corn at me. I concluded that if you could distract a bully and make him laugh, you could get out of the bullying--sometimes.

05-22-2006, 02:16 AM
Hi Jenna - what an important subject! I don't have any true stories to tell you. But what I know about bullying from a school counselor standpoint is that positive peer influence is a main factor in stopping bullying. It's almost more important what the bystanders do, than what they bully or victim do.

Search Institute (http://search-institute.org)is an excellent resource for research as well. Their resources aren't geared directly at bullying, but rather building on youth strengths. Their research comes together in the 40 Developmental Assets, one of which is Positive Peer Influence.

I don't know if this fits anywhere in what you're doing, but it's great info. You can go to their site for more info, or ask me -- I've been a promoter of the Asset Approach for about 10 years.

05-22-2006, 03:30 AM
A boy was bullying my son everyday when he got off the bus from school. When my husband realized what was going on (my son was seven and did not tell us for weeks), he waited for the bully at the bus stop and told him, "Hi, what's you name?" and made some small talk with him. He asked him why he was bothering my son. Then he asked the boy where he lived and went to talk to his parents. That pretty much solved the problem.

In another incident, my son was being bothered at school by two older boys who wouldn't let him pass in the hall. He was only six at the time. I told my son to take an alternate route or walk with a friend instead of being alone. I also told him to try to smile with the bullies and say "Peace be upon you" if he happened to encounter them again (we are Muslims, and that is the Muslim greeting). This is what he did, and it worked, perhaps because it was so unexpected.

My son is eleven now, and he still encounters bullies from time to time. Usually he seems to get teased for having good grades and participating in class. He pretty much ignores the teasing, but it does bother him. Twice, when some boys ganged up on him (physically), my husband went to talk to the principal, who called one of the bullies into the office. The principal said he would be calling the boy's father. The boy was really scared, so my husband told him: Don't worry - we won't call your father, but stop being a bully. That also worked.

07-05-2006, 09:12 PM
Innkeeper, what a magnificent post. Thank you for sharing that story -- and for what you did for those children.

08-15-2006, 03:54 AM
My twin sister and I were bullied almost daily when we first moved to a small town in Connecticut in sixth grade -- partly because we 'talked funny' (Nuu Yawk accents), partly because we were Jewish (in WASPville), and partly because we had befriended another newcomer who was, ahem, a bit 'well developed' for a 12-year old (and therefore seen as a threat by the local girls).

The girls tended to encourage the boys to bully us, both verbally and physically. I remember that tetherball was big back then -- you know, a pole stuck in the cement with a ball tethered to it by a rope? Well, the boys hit (ahem) upon the great idea of pummeling my twin, friend and I during recess with the tethered ball.

So ... what did we do? We three made a big joke of it. We even went and got personalized T-shirts saying things like "Mercy! Mercy!" on the back (to be more visible while we hunched over to protect ourselves from the pummeling). And we three made sure to laugh a lot.

Guess what? The girls decided that, hey, maybe something is wrong here ... those three newcomers seem to be enjoying themselves! They seem to be enjoying ... all the attention from the boys! Hey, wait a minute! We want to be pummeled by the boys with the punchballs, too!

The local girls started trying to insinuate themselves into the action, with the result that ... the boys stopped bullying us, and the girls no longer encouraged them to do otherwise.

Another gambit my sister and I tried -- we never really took this issue to our parents, by the way -- was to walk our german shepherd along the street where some of the nastier girls lived. I think we talked loudly and kept calling our dog "Killer" (or something like that) -- in fact, that dog was the friendliest german shepherd to ever have lived, and would be more likely to lick our enemies to death than anything else!

Hope this helps

08-17-2006, 06:02 AM
Sorry, Jenna -- It seems like I managed to kill your thread!

08-19-2006, 08:13 PM
I love this story.

When my boys were small, we attended church with a family whose sons were teenagers. This particular boy was one of my younger sons' heroes; they were like peas in a pod, with my son following the teen around, even naming one of his fish after him. One night in a Bible study the father explained why he had to miss work that day and before it was done, we were all rolling on the floor laughing.

The younger teen (I'll call him Tom--not his real name) had a problem with an older teenager bullying him, calling him a homosexual and making his life miserable. This particular young man was not small for his age (quite tall and big boned, actually) and attracted the attention of this older boy largely because he was popular. Tom was (and remains) one of those bigger than life personalities who can't quite help attracting attention, even when he's trying not to.

One day the older boy spotted Tom in the cafeteria, sitting with one of his buddies, and started the barrage of name calling, sound effects, throwing food at him and that kind of thing. Tom ignored him until the guy entered his personal space.

Tom stood up and faced him, told him to back off and leave him alone. The bully continued. "What are you going to do about you . . . " and so on. The guy got in Tom's face.

Finally, Tom had enough. He threw his arms around the guy and kissed him on the mouth.

Needless to say the guy hit him. A teacher intervened. They were both suspended. The principal said that if it wasn't in the rules to suspend both, he'd have let Tom off the hook for the most creative problem solving technique in the history of bullying.

The bully didn't bother Tom again.

Tom is now married with kids and is a professional musician in a Christian Rock Band. Big surprise.